Former CIA Director Michael Hayden on Saturday faulted the Obama administration for being "light" in its response to Russia hacking last year and said that President Donald Trump "bears some responsibility here for what happened."
"One of the reasons they were reluctant to do more was the narrative that then President-elect Trump had, that the election was going to be rigged," Hayden, who also directed the NSA, told Michael Smerconish on CNN.
"So, any overt activity from the White House would have fed that narrative as well and delegitimized the election in a different way."
The Washington Post reported Friday that the White House last year "choked" on its response to strong CIA proof of Moscow's involvement in the election.
After months of internal wrangling, President Barack Obama announced in late December measures that the Post described as "modest" – including the expulsion of 35 Russian diplomats and the closing of two U.S. compounds.
"Even team Obama now wishes they were more forceful, direct, and more specific with the information they had in hand," Hayden told Smerconish.
"I regret they didn't do enough, but I understand why they were reluctant to be more active."
However, the decision to punish Moscow further for its meddling rests with President Trump, he said.
The Russians actually did it – and it's up to him now to do something about it."
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